"What would religion be without laughter?" - St. Thomas Aquinas

"What would religion be without laughter?" - St. Thomas Aquinas

Friday, January 4, 2013

My Thirteen-Year-Old Car

So many people name their cars. My aunt even had hers blessed before she went on a long trip. It's a Catholic thing--as if the St. Christopher medal didn't have enough spiritual umph to get her out of a jam in case she found herself in one.

I named my thirteen-year-old Subaru Speedy when I bought it used six years ago. Now, you're going to think I was either being derogatory or it truly can hit the high double digits. Neither. I was reading A Team of Rivals at the time I bought the car and decided I would name it after Joshua Speed, one of Lincoln's closest friends when he was a practicing lawyer.

I must admit there are times when I glance at newer means of transportation and have quick pangs of desire, but I return to the comfort of possessing one of the finest cars ever made. As someone once described another Japanese brand, "you can't kill it." This is true. Not that I would want to.

The car gets me where I want to go, a vehicular version of an old sweater, enfolding me as I turn on the ignition; at the same time, remembering the dog--my golden retriever--who loved car-car rides and the comfort of knowing with its outmoded cassette deck, no one would have any desire to covet it or, heaven forbid, steal it. The security remote has been disabled, too, so I can manually lock it when I get out of the car, another homespun adaptation to my tastes.

Oh, my word--is it possible I have lost my marbles? No, I haven't. I am happy with what I have. After all, historically, I have had a Ford that could do ninety-five and did (my first car); a firey red Firebird; an adorable robin's egg blue Renault I burned up, a baby blue VW bug which always started right up at -25 degrees in upstate Pennsylvania; and a Triumph Spitfire which I cruised in death-defying fashion.

I don't need flash now. I need dependability and camaraderie. Besides, my golden passed away in the car I'm driving and you don't think that has created further attachment to the car..

I'm attached to it on so many levels. I swear if I'm ever in a position to buy a new car, I'm not going to do it. I don't think we'll have the same rapport.

Speedy, at this moment, is sitting in the garage, housed and waiting for the next errand. I can't wait to take it out and commune with some ever-sympathetic cylinders and a little Cyndi Lauper.

Although I think Speedy would rather have a helping of Merle Haggard.



  1. I love this post, Julie! Tracey and I tend to drive our cars for a long time. Nothing wrong with having an "old dependable" (or two), right? :)

  2. I've driven my last two cars for a long time! My Miata (meowta) was 17 when I sold it and my current car is 13!

    The Florida Furkids and Mom Sharon

  3. Any inanimate object can have a spirit if we care for it enough. Certainly sailors have always thought so about ships; drivers about their locomotives; owners about houses. I think it about books. What they've seen, the people who have used them: it all goes to make up what they are, as it does with people.

  4. Julie, how did I miss this post? Too many distractions apparently...
    I simply love the comment above!
    We have an 18 year old Ford Explorer. Bought it new. So many memories in there. Many many hockey tournaments with the kids are the best, although it did take a bit of effort to fumigate each time after transporting sweaty boys and their hockey bags from Minneapolis to Detroit, Saskatchewan and places in between! :) 159,000 miles!
    Still "runs good" and the 4 wheel drive ain't nothin' to sneeze at in the winter either! -Lynne